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Requirements for the Philosophy Major

Tracks

  • The General Track
    The General Track is designed to serve students with a broad interest in philosophy. One three-hour Logic course is required, selected from PHI 2100 or PHI 2103 (at the most one of these two courses may be used to fulfill major requirements), or PHI 4130, or PHI 4161. The remaining 30 hours may include any other philosophy courses (except that only one of PHI 2100 or 2103 may count toward the major). Students are strongly encouraged to discuss their course selections with their advisors. A total of 33 semester hours are required.
  • The Professional Track

    The Professional Track is designed for students considering philosophy as a professional discipline. It is especially appropriate for those considering graduate work in philosophy and those with an interest in a thorough and systematic study of the full range of philosophical thought. While a foreign language is not required for the major, students considering graduate school should seriously consider sufficient course work in German, French, Latin, or Greek so that they achieve fluency in the language. A total of 33 semester hours are required.

    Receiving a "C" or better in 33 semester hours of upper division philosophy courses distributed as follows will fulfill the requirements for this track:

    I. Logic and Probability (3 hours)

    • PHI 4130 Symbolic Logic
    • PHI 4161 Philosophy and Probability

    PHI 2100 and PHI 2103 do not fulfill the Logic/Probability requirement for this track, but one of these two may count toward the major under the category "other Philosophy Courses".

    II. Epistemology/Metaphysics (6 hours)

    • PHI 3300 Epistemology
    • PHI 3320 Philosophy of Mind
    • PHI 3400 Philosophy of Science
    • PHI 3420 Philosophy of Social Science
    • PHI 3454 Philosophy of Biology
    • PHI 3500 Metaphysics
    • PHI 3700 Philosophy of Religion
    • PHI 4220 Philosophy of Language
    • PHI 4230 Language and Paradox
    • PHP 4782 Phenomenology
    • PHP 4786 Existentialism
    • PHI 4836 Philosophy of Time
    • PHI 4764 Religious Experience

    III. Value Theory (6 hours)

    • PHI 2600 Introduction to Ethics
    • PHI 3601 Ethics
    • PHI 3800 Philosophy of Art
    • PHI 3640 Environmental Ethics
    • PHI 3638 Contemporary Ethical Issues
    • PHI 4633 Biomedical Ethics
    • PHM 3200 Social and Political Philosophy
    • PHM 4123 Philosophy and Feminism
    • PHM 4430 Philosophy of Law
    • PHP 4510 Marxism
    • PHM 4430 Topics in the Philosophy of Law
    • PHI 4884 Philosophy of Film

    IV. History of Philosophy (9 hours)

    • PHH 3100 Ancient Philosophy
    • PHH 3200 Medieval Philosophy
    • PHH 3420 Early Modern Philosophy
    • PHH 3440 Late Modern Philosophy
    • PHH 4600 Twentieth Century Philosophy
    • PHI 4930 A Major Philosopher
    • PHH 3401 16th and 17th Century Philosophy
    • PHH 3402 British Empiricism

    V. Non-Western Philosophy (3 hours)

    • PHH 3810 Philosophy of Buddhism
    • PHH 3840 Chinese and Japanese Philosophy
    • PHI 3073 African Philosophy
    • PHH 3042 Latin American Philosophy
    • PHI 3762 Eastern Philosophical and Religious Thought

    VI. Other Philosophy Courses (3 hours)

    Any Philosophy courses (PHI, PHH, PHM, and PHP prefixes) may be used to fulfill this portion of the requirement provided that they have not been used to fulfill one of the earlier distribution requirements.

    VII. Philosophy Seminar (3 hours)

  • The Specialized Track

    It is required that you speak with the Director of Undergraduate Studies in the department before choosing this track.

    The Specialized Track is designed for students who are interested in philosophical reflection on a specific discipline or area such as law, religion, or psychology. It is especially appropriate for pre-law students and for dual majors who are interested in the relationship between philosophy and their other major discipline. An approved Individualized Plan of Study will meet the requirements for this track. Such plans are designed by the Philosophy Advisor in consultation with the student so that they can be tailored to the student's specific interests and goals. Students pursuing the Specialized Track must secure prior written approval of their course selections from their Advisor.

    The proposed course selections must present a clear, focused, and coherent plan of study. Each such plan must include 33 semester hours, and the courses taken in accord with the plan must be passed with a grade of "C" or better. One three-hour Logic course is required, selected from PHI 2100 or PHI 2103 (at most one of these two courses may be used to fulfill major requirements), or PHI 4130, or PHI 4161. Up to nine semester hours from other programs may be counted toward the 34-hour major. Students must secure their advisor's approval of their Individualized Study Plan for a Specialized Track at least two semesters before graduation.

    Examples of Individualized Study Plans Fulfilling the Specialized Track:

    (Note that with permission of the Director of Undergraduate Studies, many other courses are appropriate within each focus.)

    Example 1: Pre-Law and Social-Political Philosophy

    At least seven Philosophy courses from the following: PHI 2600 Introduction to Ethics; PHI 3601 Ethics; PHI 3638 Contemporary Ethical Issues; PHI 3200 Social and Political Philosophy; PHM 4400 Philosophy of Law; PHM 4430 Topics in Philosophy of Law; PHP 4510 Marxism; PHM 4123 Philosophy and Feminism; PHI 3700 Philosophy of Religion; PHI 4222 Philosophy of Dialogue; or PHI 4633 Biomedical Ethics. One three-hour Logic course selected from PHI 2100 or PHI 2103 (at most one of these two courses may be used to fulfill major requirements), or PHI 4130, or PHI 4161.

    Up to three courses from the following: ANT 3302 Male and Female: Sex Roles and Sexuality; ANT 4273 Law and Culture; CCJ 4252 Criminal Justice and the Constitution; CCJ 4280 Law and Criminal Justice; CPO 4057 Political Violence and Revolution; INR 3403 International Law; PAD 4040 Public Values, Ethics and Morality in Changing Environment; ISS 3330 Ethical Issues in Social Science Research; POS 3604 Constitutional Law: Limits; POS 3603 Constitutional Law: Powers; POS 3283 The Judicial Process; POT 3013 Ancient and Medieval Political Theory; POT 3054 Modern Political Theory I; POT 3055 Modern Political II; POT 3064 Contemporary Political Ideologies; PSY 4930 Women, Law and Social Psychology; PUP 4323 Women in Politics; REL 3170 Religion and Ethics; REL 3492 Nature and Human Values; SOP 4842 Legal Psychology; SYA 4010 Sociological Theories; or SYA 4011 Advanced Social Theory.

    Example 2: Western Philosophy and Its Historical Context

    PHH 3100 Ancient Philosophy and at least six of the following Philosophy courses: PHH 3200 Medieval Philosophy; PHH 3420 Early Modern Philosophy; PHH 3401(16&17 Century Philosophy), PHH 3602 (British Empiricism), PHH 3440 Late Modern Philosophy; PHH 3700 American Philosophy; PHH 4600 Twentieth Century Philosophy; PHP 4510 Marxism; PHP 4782 Phenomenology; or PHP 4786 Existentialism. One three-hour Logic course selected from PHI 2100 (which counts within this track as part of the 33 hour total), PHI 4130, or PHI 4161.

    Up to three courses from the following: (some of these are acceptable only if particular choices are made within the above Philosophy list): AMH 3332 American Intellectual History II; EUH 3122 Europe in the Later Middle Ages; EUH 3142 Renaissance and Reformation; EUH 3181 Medieval Culture; EUH 3205 Nineteenth-Century Europe; EUH 3611 European Culture & Intellectual History; EUH 4286 Topics in European History (the Philosophy advisor would need to approve the particular topic offered); EUH 4453 The French Revolution & Napoleon; EUH 4520 England in the 18th Century; EUH 4602 The Enlightenment; EUH 4660 Modern Europe, 1789-Present; HIS 3308 War and Society; HIS 4454 The History of Racial Theory in Europe and the United States.

    Example 3: Philosophy and Religious Thought

    PHI 3700 Philosophy of Religion, PHI 4764 Religious Experience, and at least five of the following Philosophy courses: PHH 3100 Ancient Philosophy; PHH 3200 Medieval Philosophy; PHH 3420 Early Modern Philosophy; PHI 3300 Epistemology; PHI 3500 Metaphysics; PHI 3601 Ethics; PHI 4161 Philosophy & Probability; PHI 3638 Contemporary Ethical Issues; PHI 3762 Eastern Philosophical and Religious Thought; PHI 4222 Philosophy of Dialogue; PHM 3040 Philosophical Anthropology: PHM 4050 Philosophy of Death; PHP 3840 Chinese and Japanese Philosophy; PHP 4782 Phenomenology; PHH 4600 Twentieth Century Philosophy; PHH 3810 Philosophy of Buddhism; or PHP 4786 Existentialism. One three-hour Logic course selected from PHI 2100 (which counts within this track as part of the 33 hour total), PHI 4130, or PHI 4161.

    Up to three courses from the following: ANT 3241 Myth, Ritual, and Mysticism; EUH 3121 Europe in the Earlier Middle Ages; EUH 3122 Europe in the Later Middle Ages; EUH 3142 Renaissance and Reformation; EUH 4602 The Enlightenment; PPE 3670 Psychology of Myth; or PPE 4104 Humanistic Psychology; REL 3160 Science and Religion; REL 3170 Ethics in World Religions; REL 3520 Saints, Witches and Cathedrals; REL 4340 Pathways to Buddha; REL 4370 African Religions; REL 4420 Contemporary Religious Thought; SYA 4010 Sociological Theories; SYO 4200 Sociology of Religion and Cults

    Example 4: Philosophy and Difference

    At least seven Philosophy courses from the following: PHH 3042 Latin American Philosophy; PHI 3073 African Philosophy; PHM 4123 Philosophy and Feminism; PHH 3840 Indian Philosophy; PHI 3762 Eastern Philosophical & Religious Thought; PHP 3840 Chinese and Japanese Philosophy; PHI 4222 Philosophy of Dialogue; PHM 3040 Philosophical Anthropology; PHI 3600 Ethics; PHI 4630 Contemporary Ethical Issues; PHM 4020 Love and Sexuality; PHP 4510 Marxism; or PHP 4786 Existentialism. One three-hour Logic course selected from PHI 2100 or 2103 (Either of which counts within this track as part of the 33 hour total), or PHI 4130, or PHI 4161.

    Up to three courses from the following: AMH History of Women in the United States; ANT 3034 Anthropological Theories; ANT 3302 Anthropology of Gender; ANT 3304 Voices of Third World Women; ANT 3640 Language & Culture; ANT 4306 The Third World; ANT 4352 African Peoples & Cultures; LIN 4651 Gender and Language; LIT 3383 Women in Literature; POS 4605 Gender Justice; POT 4309 Sex, Power and Politics; PUP 4323 Women in Politics; REL 4340 Pathways to Buddha; REL 4345 Zen Buddhism; REL 4370 African Religions; REL 4481 Contemporary Latin American Religious Thought; REL 3145 Women and Religion; SOP 3742 Psychology of Women; SYA 4170 Comparative Sociology; SYD 4704 Seminar in Ethnicity; INR 4024 Ethnicity and Nationality: World Patterns and Problems; WST 4504 Feminist Theory. The University is particularly rich in courses that would be evidently and directly related to Philosophy & Difference, and there are other courses which could be added to this list with an advisor's approval.

    Example 5: Philosophy and Psychology

    PHI 3320 Philosophy of Mind and at least six of the following Philosophy Courses: PHI 4161 Philosophy & Probability; PHI 3300 Epistemology; PHI 3400 Philosophy of Science; PHI 3420 Philosophy of Social Science; PHI 3500 Metaphysics; PHI 4221 Philosophy of Language; PHI 4222 Philosophy of Dialogue; PHI 4321 Topics in the Philosophy of Mind; PHM 3040 Philosophical Anthropology; PHM 4020 Love and Sexuality; PHM 4050 Philosophy of Death; PHP 4782 Phenomenology; PHH 4600 20th Century Philosophy; or PHP 4786 Existentialism. One three-hour Logic course selected from PHI 2100 (which counts within this track as part of the 33 hour total), PHI 4130, or PHI 4161.

    Up to three courses from the following: DEP 3115 Development in Infancy: The Basis of Human Knowledge; DEP 4032 Life-Span Cognitive Development; DEP 4044 Psychology of Moral Development; DEP 4164 Children's Learning; DEP 4182 Socio-emotional Development; EAB 3002 Intro to the Experimental Analysis of Behavior; EXP 3304 Motivation and Emotion; EXP 4204 Sensation and Perception; EXP 4605 Cognitive Processes; EXP 4934 Current Experimental Theories; PPE 3502 Psychology of Consciousness; PPE 3003 Theories of Personality; PPE 3670 Psychology of Myth; PPE 4104 Humanistic Psychology; SOP 3004 Introductory Social Psychology; SOP 3015 Social & Personality Development; or SOP 4522 Social Motivation.

    Example 6: Philosophy and the Arts

    PHI 3800 Philosophy of Art and at least four of the following Philosophy Courses: PHI 4882 Philosophy in Literature; PHH 3100 Ancient Philosophy; PHH 3200 Medieval Philosophy; PHH 3420 Early Modern Philosophy; PHH 3440 Late Modern Philosophy; PHI 3601 Ethics; PHI 3638 Contemporary Ethical Issues; PHI 4222 Philosophy of Dialogue; PHI 4764 Religious Experience, PHM 4020 Love and Sexuality; PHM 4050 Philosophy of Death; PHP 4782 Phenomenology; or PHP 4786 Existentialism. One three-hour Logic course selected from PHI 2100 (which counts within this track as part of the 33 hour total), PHI 4130, or PHI 4161.

    Up to two Philosophy Independent Research three-hour courses concentrating on student's particular interests and unifying the Major.

    Up to three upper-division courses from the following (some of these are acceptable only if particular choices are made within the above Philosophy list and the Independent Research topics): Courses in Literature from either the English department or Modern Languages; Art History courses; upper-division courses in the visual arts; music and music history; or theater and dance.

Declaring a Track

The Panther Degree Audit for philosophy majors has the General Track as its "default" setting, and so majors who wish to declare a Professional Track or a Specialized Track major must meet with the Director of Undergraduate Studies to have the necessary adjustment to the audit made. Students must declare the Specialized Track at least two semesters before graduation.

Advising and Admission

During their lower division years, students are encouraged to take other courses in Philosophy according to their particular interests. The Director of Undergraduate Studies is available to advise students with respect to degree completion. Students are advised to take their major courses throughout their undergraduate education rather than trying to take them all in the final semesters. Majors are encouraged to take PHI2010 (Introduction to Philosophy) to fulfill their Humanities Tier 1 requirement of the University Core Curriculum (UCC). This course provides students with an excellent introduction to philosophy and serves to prepare students for their major courses. It is not a required course, however, and it is not a prerequisite for taking Upper Division philosophy courses. Similarly, students are encouraged to take PHI2600 (Introduction to Ethics) to complete their Humanities Tier II requirement of the UCC and PHI2100 (Logic) to complete the Computational Reasoning Tier II section of the UCC. In addition to fulfilling UCC requirements and providing majors with a strong foundation for more advanced work in philosophy, all three courses can be applied to philosophy major requirements.

Degree Requirements

The following requirements apply to all three tracks:

  • Any course taken to fulfill a requirement for the major may not be taken with the "pass/fail" option and must be passed with a grade of "C" or better, with two exceptions PHI4945 (Internship in Philosophy) and PHI4911 (Senior Research);
  • No more than six hours of Independent Study may be used to fulfill major requirements;
  • At most one of PHI 2100 (Introduction to Logic), PHI 2103 (Critical Thinking), or their equivalents, may be used to fulfill major requirements, and at most six other hours of lower division philosophy courses may be counted toward the degree.
  • Students are required to satisfy a one-credit capstone project (PHI 4911). Enrollment is by permission of the department and normally occurs in the last semester before graduation. Contact the Director of Undergraduate Studies for further information.
  • In addition to fulfilling the requirements of the major, the College of Arts, Sciences and Education has a number of requirements which are listed in the CASE section of the University's Catalog.